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S04046 Summary:

BILL NO    S04046 

SAME AS    No same as 

SPONSOR    CARLUCCI

COSPNSR    ADDABBO, AVELLA, DILAN, ESPAILLAT, GIPSON, HOYLMAN, KLEIN, LATIMER,
           MONTGOMERY, PARKER, PERKINS, SAVINO, SERRANO, SQUADRON, STAVISKY,
           TKACZYK

MLTSPNSR   



Relates to high volume horizontal hydraulic fracturing; requires the
commissioner of environmental conservation to not proceed to finalize and
publish the revised supplemental generic environmental impact statement (SGEIS)
prior to the expiration of a 24 month period following the effective date of
this act or until the commissioner of health determines that the completion of
the EPA and other studies deemed relevant by the commissioner of health have
produced data sufficient to make a recommendation to DEC regarding the
permitting of high volume horizontal hydraulic fracturing (HVHF) in the state.
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S04046 Text:

                           S T A T E   O F   N E W   Y O R K
       ________________________________________________________________________

                                         4046

                              2013-2014 Regular Sessions

                                   I N  S E N A T E

                                     March 6, 2013
                                      ___________

       Introduced  by  Sens.  CARLUCCI, KLEIN, SAVINO -- read twice and ordered
         printed, and when printed to be committed to the Committee on Environ-
         mental Conservation

       AN ACT in relation to high volume horizontal hydraulic fracturing

         THE PEOPLE OF THE STATE OF NEW YORK, REPRESENTED IN SENATE AND  ASSEM-
       BLY, DO ENACT AS FOLLOWS:

    1    Section  1.  Legislative  Findings.  The  Legislature hereby finds and
    2  declares:
    3    1. High volume horizontal hydraulic fracturing (HVHF) is a  method  of
    4  extracting natural gas from underground shale formations. The HVHF proc-
    5  ess  typically includes the introduction of millions of gallons of frac-
    6  turing fluid - a mixture of water, proppants and chemicals - under  high
    7  pressure into a previously drilled wellbore.
    8    2.  Studies  related  to  the  use  of HVHF have shown that inadequate
    9  casing and concrete used to line the walls of the wellbore, as  well  as
   10  poor  wastewater  management  practices,  can  result  in the accidental
   11  release of fracturing fluid and methane into surface and groundwater.
   12    3. For example, on November 4, 2009, the commonwealth of  Pennsylvania
   13  department  of  environmental  protection  entered into a consent decree
   14  with Cabot Oil and Gas Corporation, in which the  department  determined
   15  that  several  of  Cabot's wells had excessive pressures and/or insuffi-
   16  cient or improper cemented casings that  allowed  methane  gas  to  vent
   17  between or from behind various cemented casings to groundwater used as a
   18  source of drinking water.
   19    4. In December 2011, the United States environmental protection agency
   20  (EPA)  released a draft report entitled "Investigation of Ground Contam-
   21  ination near Pavillion, Wyoming," in which the  agency  determined  that
   22  high concentrations of benzene, xylenes, and other hydrocarbons detected
   23  in  groundwater  samples  indicate  that  pits  previously  used for the
   24  storage/disposal of drilling wastes and produced and flowback  waters  -
   25  related  to  the  use  of HVHF - were a source of the contamination. EPA

        EXPLANATION--Matter in ITALICS (underscored) is new; matter in brackets
                             [ ] is old law to be omitted.
                                                                  LBD09481-02-3
       S. 4046                             2

    1  also determined that the impacts to groundwater could also be  explained
    2  by  migration of chemicals from the wellbore during hydraulic fracturing
    3  process.
    4    5.  Only  recently  has the scientific community begun to examine more
    5  comprehensively the potential public health impacts associated with  the
    6  accidental  release  of fracturing fluid and methane to the environment,
    7  and related impacts associated with truck traffic and changes in  commu-
    8  nity character.
    9    6.  Serious  potential  water-related  adverse  impacts  that  are the
   10  subject of scientific concern include: Water resources could be  contam-
   11  inated  during  many phases of HVHF; potential HVHF impacts could affect
   12  surface and groundwater; Drinking water tainted by HVHF-associated chem-
   13  icals could result in human health impacts; Exposure  to  water  contam-
   14  inants  through  irrigated  crops  or  through eating fish from polluted
   15  surface water could also result in health impacts; Excessive water with-
   16  drawals for use in the HVHF process may lead to permanent  depletion  of
   17  public and private water supplies; Drilling through multiple water bear-
   18  ing  zones  increases  the potential for water to migrate between zones,
   19  which could result in cross-contamination or the loss of freshwater.
   20    7. In particular, there are three comprehensive studies of HVHF-relat-
   21  ed health impacts that are being undertaken at  the  state  and  federal
   22  levels:
   23    (a)  A United States environmental protection agency (EPA) study enti-
   24  tled, "Study of the Potential Impacts of Hydraulic Fracturing on  Drink-
   25  ing  Water Resources." The purposes of the study is to assess the poten-
   26  tial impacts of hydraulic fracturing on  drinking  water  resources,  if
   27  any,  and  to  identify the driving factors that may affect the severity
   28  and frequency of such impacts. Water samples are being taken in  several
   29  of  the  states  that  allow  the  use  of HVHF. A final draft report is
   30  expected to be released for public comment and peer review in 2014.
   31    (b) A Geisinger Health System study was announced in August 2012. This
   32  study will review detailed health histories of hundreds of thousands  of
   33  patients  who  live  near  wells and other facilities that are producing
   34  natural gas from the Marcellus shale formation. Preliminary  results  of
   35  data analysis may be released within the next year.
   36    (c)  A  study  of  HVHF-related  health  impacts recently announced by
   37  researchers from the University of Pennsylvania  in  collaboration  with
   38  scientists  from  Columbia,  Johns  Hopkins  and the University of North
   39  Carolina.
   40    8. In recognition of the potential public health and  related  impacts
   41  associated  with the use of HVHF, in September 2012, the commissioner of
   42  environmental conservation requested that  the  commissioner  of  health
   43  initiate a public health review of the revised draft supplemental gener-
   44  ic  environmental impact statement (SGEIS), dated September 7, 2011, for
   45  high volume hydraulic fracturing (HVHF) prepared by  the  department  of
   46  environmental conservation (DEC).
   47    9. On February 12, 2013, the commissioner of health subsequently noti-
   48  fied  the  commissioner  of  environmental  conservation that the public
   49  health review was on-going and that the commissioner was evaluating  the
   50  three  comprehensive  studies of HVHF-related health impacts in conjunc-
   51  tion with outside experts.
   52    10. The purpose of this act is to assure the people of  the  state  of
   53  New  York  that  all  potential  public  health  impacts  posed  by  the
   54  extraction of natural gas by means of HVHF are being adequately  consid-
   55  ered prior to the finalization of the revised SGEIS.
       S. 4046                             3

    1    11.  Natural  gas  prices  have  declined  to the extent that industry
    2  experts believe very limited HVHF would be conducted over  the  next  24
    3  months in New York if HVHF is permitted. Little economic activity or job
    4  creation  would  result  until  natural gas prices recover. The adequate
    5  study  and consideration of health impacts therefore will have no impact
    6  in the near term on job creation in HVHF shale areas.
    7    S 2. The commissioner of environmental conservation shall not  proceed
    8  to  finalize  and publish the revised SGEIS prior to the expiration of a
    9  24 month period following the effective date of this act  or  until  the
   10  commissioner  of  health  determines  that the completion of the studies
   11  deemed relevant by the commissioner of health have produced data  suffi-
   12  cient  to  make  a  recommendation  to  the  department of environmental
   13  conservation regarding the permitting of HVHF in the state.
   14    S 3. The commissioner of the department of environmental  conservation
   15  shall  not  proceed  to  finalize  and  publish  the revised SGEIS prior
   16  completion of the United States Environmental Protection  Agency  "Study
   17  of  the  Potential  Impacts  of  Hydraulic  Fracturing on Drinking Water
   18  Resources" and the Geisinger Marcellus Shale Initiative.
   19    S 4. This act shall take effect immediately.
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